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El despertador fotonico

First ascent: Caterina Bassi, Martino Quintavalla, October 2019
By: Caterina Bassi, Martino Quintavalla
Area: Bernina Alps, Group: Masino - Bregaglia, Peak: Escudo del Qualido - Val Qualido, Height: 2300m, Country: Italy, Region: Lombardy

Established in autumn 2019, El Despertador Fotonico is the latest addition to Escudo del Qualido. It tackles a line on the righthand side and was climbed ground-up with trad gear where possible and is otherwise equipped with 10 mm stainless steel bolts and abseil rings at the belays. This is a beautiful and varied route up excellent rock past beautiful slabs and a difficult finishing corner.


From the Val di Mello car park (reach this on foot in 30 minutes from San Martino, or by car if you have permission, or by shuttle bus from San Martino), continue along the mule track past the lake that was recently created by the Val Qualido landslide up to Ca’ dei Scuma. From here break off left and take the path up into Val Qualido; follow this uphill, past some minor forks, until the path leads below the roofs of "Precipizio degli Asteroidi". From here there is only one path, indicated with red and white markers. Continue past the East face of Qualido, reach what is almost the top of Mongolfiera and from here continue to the obvious Escudo del Qualido rock face. The route starts on the far right.


P1: 6a + 45 m - 1 peg
Climb up the flake, get established onto the slab and obvious white vein. Continue slightly left via cracked flakes to reach a small roof. Get established on the obvious white vein and follow the next crack to the belay.

P2: 6c+ 40 m - 3 bolts
Follow the obvious white vein rightwards to the belay.

P3: 6c + 40 m - 5 bolts
Climb the slab direct. From the last bolt make a difficult move to reach the roof above. Follow the crack that leads from the small roof to the left and get established above using the knobs. At the second roof continue left, breach this and continue to the belay.

P4: 6a + 45 m - 3 bolts
Continue up the crack above the belay. Reach a grassy ledge then move slightly right. Go straight up the slab above, continue past the flake and reach the next belay at the base of the obvious corner.

P5: 7b 20 m - 1 bolt + 1 peg
Climb up the corner. Belay on the terrace on the right.

P6: 6c 20 m - 3 bolts
Use the small terrace to move rightwards. Follow the three bolts visible on the overlying black slab. After the last bolt move left and use some cracks to reach a small terrace. Continue left to reach the belay.


Abseil down the route, skipping belays 1 and 5


A set of Friends up to #4 BD and a few mirco cams. Two sets of 0.5 - 1, possibily even triple 0.4, 0.5 and 0.75 for pitch 5

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